HOW SAFE ARE PAK NUKES?
Prof DR Colonel K Prabhakar Rao ( retired)
Ever since Pakistan is involved in terrorism, the only question in every ones mind is, “ How safe are Paks nukes”. Will Pakistan be able to guard it's nukes from falling into hands of crazy and lunatic Taliban? Will Iran be able to smuggle out some nukes out of Pakistan in this crucial hour? Is Pak army capable of protecting its nukes and how loyal it is for the nation? Will Pak army toe the line of Taliban in future. These are the most important questions troubling the world leaders and strategists to day. Although USA the sole international police man expressed its fear about safety of Paks nukes, the Pak rulers have been telling the world that they are safe and its army is capable of guarding them. Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari has claimed that his country's nuclear weapons are safe, rejecting US concerns that some of these weapons are at risk of being acquired by members of the Taliban. "They are in safe hands," Zardari told CNN in an interview recently (1). This reaction came from Zardari after doubts were expressed by New York Times. He also rejected that Taliban sympathizers in Pak army could betray the country. "There aren't any, sir, sympathizers for them," he said. "There is a mindset in the local area maybe who feel they are akin to the same religion, God, etc, etc. But nothing that should concern anybody as far as the nuclear arsenal or other instruments of such sort."
Can we trust Pak rulers in their capabilities? Many doubt them and their sincerity in protecting nukes. Just think of recent Taliban actions in Pakistan and Taliban penetrated Pak country and reached to places that were just less than 100 km from national capital. How they could come close- by and why they could not be prevented from over running the areas? What was army doing? Suddenly Pak government woke up and with American warnings indulged in a military operation in Swat and Buner and has been pushing Taliban back and they also claimed that more than 750 Taliban were slain by Pak army. Why this operation could not be taken up earlier? Will Pakistan require some ones goading and American threats of invasion to act strongly? Probably the second one is true. What was the reason for allowing Taliban to become so strong and reemerge after Afghan debacle in 2001? Answers have to be found to these questions.
The most worried nation on the aspect of safety of Pak nukes is obviously USA and Israel too. Ever since Iran threatened Israel that it would use Nuclear weapon and destroy it from the face of earth, Israel and its ally USA are spending sleepless nights and considering all options. Loss of control in Pakistan has pushed the crisis further with the possibility of Iran acquiring nukes from clandestine sources like Taliban. Taliban while in power in Afghanistan were known to promote illegal trade of Narcotics, drugs and arms to make quick money and it was probably the national trade. For them trading in nukes can not be a new illegal activity now.It is a degenerated organiation devoid of any ivilized thinking.
The worry and anxiety of USA are reflected in the statements that are(2):-
“Recently CIA director Leon Panetta, said the US does not know where all the Pakistani nuclear weapons are being kept.
Defense department spokesman, Geoff Morrell, told reporters that they are "comfortable with the protocols, the Pakistani military has in place to ensure the security of their nuclear arsenal".
"I am sure that our planners take whatever requisite action is required to ensure the arsenal in a country that is obviously in the midst of a great deal -- that finds itself with a great deal of challenges right now, that they have some visibility on where such weapons arelocated,"Morrell said.
Such a statement as above from the Pentagon came a day after, they wer asked
When asked about news reports that the Special Operations forces have a contingency plan to go in and secure Pakistan's nuclear weapons if the need be, Morrell said the US is comfortable with the security measures of the Pakistan.It was said,"The last thing we want is to have the Taliban have access to the nuclear weapons in Pakistan. We're fighting, obviously, that potential in Iran. The last thing we would want is to give al-Qaeda that potential. So we continue to watch that very closely."
It is learnt that The United States has developed contingency plans to safeguard Pakistani nuclear weapons if they find nukes falling into the wrong hands, but US officials worry that their limited knowledge about the location of the arsenal could pose a problem. It is feared that the operation could be difficult if they venture without knowing the precise location of the nukes ( 4). Will Pakistan co operate to share information with US in the eventuality of Taliban getting closer and laying hands on them? It may be imagined that Pak army would help USA to retrieve nukes from falling into Taliban hands and that could be a wishful thinking. The Pakistan Foreign Office recently rubbished reports that Islamabad has shared information about its nukes with US authorities. Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit told reporters here that information about Pakistan's nukes is sacrosanct and could not be shared with any other country. Inspite of all talk going on and Pakistan being pushed to wall the Pak ledars put a brave face that they are a sovereign nation and its rights are supreme and can not be violated by even USA. Theya re living in a fools paradise. Pakistan is simply an American stooge and is surviving on American dole from time to time. Strangulation of funds and aid by USA will make Pakistan to reel and would soon fall at the feet of west.Its 7 lak army much glorified and would break off as a pack of cards. The actual plans of contingency plans of USA can not be known as they are not revealed. Although there are other countries in the world where nuclear weapons are stock piled, the most dangerous country to day is Pakistan because there is no proper control by government and Pakistan has become a failed state. It has no control over its own people and provinces.They have no plan and live on day to day basis.
Republican Senator Richard Lugar has asked the Obama admisitration to apply Nunn-Lugar Bill to Pakistan, like it did with the former Soviet Union, to safeguard Pakistan’s nuclear weapons. Lugar, who is now co-sponsoring a financial aid bill for Pakistan, recommended that cooperation with Pakistan under the program could also include its biological weapons. Lugar is known to have said, “Pakistan has many dangerous diseases and pathogens under its control. The Nunn-Lugar program can help secure the pathogen strains to ensure they do not fall into the wrong hands,” he added. The Nunn-Lugar Act, initiated in 1991, established the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program to provide US funding and expertise in assisting safeguarding and dismantling nuclear, chemical and biological weapons stockpiles in Soviet Union. Under the act, more than 7,500 nuclear warheads, 2,000 missiles, and over 1,100 missile launchers in the former Soviet Republics of Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus have been deactivated till now. (ANI) Lugar declined to approve of Zardari’s assurance and has been pushing the Obama administration to act under the provisions of the Nunn-Lugar Act. How can any one accept Zardaris assurances?
The whole country is under the threat of crazy Taliban and they came close to 100 km to Rawalpindi the national capital while government looked on. In such state which sane person would be assured? If the world nations relax at such situation, very soon they will face fait accompli. Therefore USA must never assume that Pak nukes would be safe and prepare itself with contingency plans to take over the nukes and save the world from the fanatic mullah led Taliban who are hell bent on destruction of world and treading the path of Islamic fundamentalism. USA is the only country that is capable of saving Pak nukes from falling into the hands of thugs like Taliban, AlQaeda and Iran too joining them in frustration out of hatred towards USA. Since 1989 Iranians have been shouting “Death to America.. Death to America”, goose stepping in parades including Burka clad women.It is the hall mark of fundamentalism and hatred. No other country like has that capability of saving nukes.. The battle in Pakistan is raging between Pak army and Taliban and it is unlikely that the operations would be decisive and destruction of Taliban would result under conventional war fare. Pakistan is a land locked country except the sea coast in South west. Taliban would surely lure and drag pak army into most dangerous and difficult Waziristan province where victory would be a mirage and it will be the killing field. Resembling Karbala for pak army. Pak army failed earlier in these areas and finally came to terms and declared cease fire. Will the present operation would be different? There is always a religious sympathy for Jihadis in Pakistan. The Taliban attired in the medieval type dress with black Turbans demonstrating that the they are religious fighters would soon attract sympathy from Pak army. Time is running out from hands. It is high time USA acts and set aside Zardari’s assurances and his promises of keeping Taliban under control. It must be remembered that wick lamps that burn oil, at the time of getting off will burn with bright light for the last time and suddenly go off. Pakistan too is demonstrating its fire power against Taliban with tempo and very soon its tempo would be extinguished. Thus Pakistan falling into the hands of Taliban is inevitable and soon would disintegrate like a wick lamp . Before that happens nukes must be saved even if it is an unpleasant task.
1.Pak nukes safe Taliban cant get them. Zardari, http://184.108.40.206/search?q=cache:KYBzWMmoY5wJ:ibnlive.in.com/news/pak-nukes-safe-taliban-cant-get-them-zardari/91912-2.html+How+safe+are+Paks+nukes%3F&cd=4&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=in
2. Pak nukes safe but will take action if Taliban tries hand. US http://220.127.116.11/search?q=cache:5jQi9bP-ZmgJ:timesofindia.indiatimes.com/World/Pakistan/Pak-nukes-safe-but-will-take-action-if-Taliban-tries-hand-US/articleshow/4554456.cms+How+safe+are+Pak+nukes%3F&cd=3&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=in
3. 'US to safeguard Pakistan nukes', Washington, The Brunei Times, Monday November, 12, 2007. http://www.bt.com.bn/en/asia_news/2007/11/12/us_to_safeguard_pakistan_nukes
4 US senator urges Obama to safe gurad Pk nukes, Gaea news, Ani , May 9 th 2009, http://18.104.22.168/search?q=cache:-HIV3Y5MYxsJ:blog.taragana.com/n/us-senator-urges-obama-to-safeguard-pak-nukes-57639/+What+plans+USA+has+to+safe+guard+Pak+nukes&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=in
Dr K Prabhakar Rao